New South Wales Office

tailored, end-to-end logistics

Sydney Freight Forwarding

More than a freight forwarder. Consider ICE your logistics partner. We help you plan your logistics process end-to-end, actively looking for opportunities to minimise costs and save time. We understand your timelines, budget and specific requirements before recommending the most cost-effective shipping solution available via air, sea or land.


planning your shipment

International Shipping Considerations

A few things to consider before engaging a freight forwarder in Sydney:

  • Is moving your goods for the lowest cost possible a priority? You may consider a transshipment service if your business allows longer transit times.
  • Is air freight out of budget but you need your goods as quickly as possible? You may consider an express or direct shipment. In the event of shipping peak season or port congestion, for an additional fee, we may be able to flag your shipment as urgent and avoid it being rolled over onto the next vessel. We can also liaise with the shipping lines directly to ask for priority in container availability. While there is no guarantee that your goods will be made available earlier, ICE go above and beyond in leveraging our long lasting relationships with carriers and overseas shipping agents to secure space.
  • Is the integrity of your cargo a priority? Are you shipping high-value goods? We offer a range of cargo insurance options so your goods are covered during every step of the journey (including for damage, theft and loss). Consider whether your cargo is high in value, how easy is to acquire new/replacement stock and import costs. Our team can help you in the decision making process by breaking down the risk-reward for your type of cargo.
  • Do you need extra time to pack or unpack the container? We can request to the shipping lines extra free time at no additional cost (please note this must be done before the vessel departs).
  • Is your packing compliant and safe? Is it wrapped and labeled correctly? Are all wooden pallets compliant with ISPM15? Is the weigh distributed evenly in the container? Have you used straps or dunnage to secure the cargo in its place? Is your container overweight? Have you declared the verified gross mass (VGM) accurately to prevent extra charges? Is the container clean and free from contamination? If your goods arrive to the port with poor packing, the carrier might refuse to load it onto their vessel. And if your goods get damaged, your insurance might not cover if packing wasn’t done correctly. ICE can arrange packing on your behalf at an approved facility so your goods are export-ready. We also can arrange appropriate packaging at origin for your imports through our reliable overseas network. Alternatively, we can go to your premises to provide a packing consultation to show how to pack your goods correctly and safely.
  • Is your cargo under customs control? Leave it with us -literally. Our Sydney warehouse is licensed for airfreight and LCL bonded cargo, which means you can legally store your goods at our premises while waiting for customs clearance, instead of paying high storage fees at the wharf. For FCL, we can arrange storage and bonded transport at an approved facility.
  • Do you have any special transport requirements? Window receival times? Unload equipment hire, such as franna crane, tail lift or sideloader? Pilot escorts? Driver’s induction? Priority or overnight delivery? Dangerous Goods or over-dimensional heavy cargo? A Sydney freight forwarder has the expertise to recommend which route,  transport mode and equipment is is the most cost-effective to move and unload your goods. We may suggest a combination of rail and road transport, for example, based on the cargo and destination address.
  • Do you need extra storage? If your premises are not ready to receive the goods, ICE can arrange long or short term storage at a local 3PL or in our own 600m² warehouse in Mascot. We select the best storage option available considering transport costs, distance and convenience.
  • Do you have all shipping documents on hand? This is the number one thing in your control to ensure a smooth and efficient shipping. Ensure you have your commercial invoice, packing list, packing declaration and certificate of origin (if trading from a free-trade country). 
  • Do you need help with customs clearance? Our brokers can review your documents and advise you on the right HS classification for your goods, check if you are eligible for GST deferrals or tax concessions with a free trade agreement, assist with letters of credit, and arrange customs documents such as certificates of origin, import permits, phytosanitary certificates, fumigation certificates or export declarations.
  • Are you shipping project cargo? Fast and clear communication is our difference. Over dimensional cargo operations are often complex. ICE have decades of experience in managing such operations and has a network of reliable carriers, agents and transport operators that can be trusted to move your high-value cargo. We offer a dedicated and experienced Project Manager to plan every step of your break-bulk movement. We liaise with all stakeholders to ensure information is delivered correctly and in a timely manner – which in shipping, cannot be underestimated. We manage all functions of project shipping, from origin to destination: site surveying, best routes and service options, site inductions, pilot escorts, window receival times and equipment hire. We also offer customs auditing to ensure your documentation is correct before the goods are on water and offer customs duty or tax exposures reviews to save you money if possible.
  • Does your cargo require fumigation? During the stink bug season, from 1 September 2023 to 30 April 2024, imported cargo that is classified as high-risk AND comes from (or transships at) a high-risk country, must be fumigated. Break-bulk cargo can only be fumigated offshore by an approved service provider. We can assist with arranging fumigation and treatment declaration to comply with Australia’s biosecurity measures.

Services Offered

Via Air, Land, or Sea, We Make it Hassle-Free

Tap into our global network of airfreight carriers to import your goods into Sydney in 1-3 days. For exports, daily services are available. This is the best option for time-sensitive cargo.

Sydney Air Freight Learn more

Take advantage of our efficient and reliable sea freight solutions for both FCL and LCL. Weekly direct and transhipment services to/from Sydney are available to suit your budget and timelines.

Sydney Sea Freight Learn more

Get expert customs advice to clear goods prior to entering the country. We review your shipping documentation, prepare import or export declarations and permits, calculate your import duty tax and ensure your are compliant with biosecurity (quarantine) requirements, such as fumigation.

Sydney Customs Consultancy Learn more

Expert coordination of complex projects. We handle heavy and out of gauge cargo end to end. With strong relationships with the best break-bulk carriers in Sydney and a dedicated project manager, your valuable cargo is in safe hands.

Sydney Project Freight Forwarding Learn more

ICE have long-lasting relationships with the best transport operators in Sydney’s metro and regional areas. We arrange the cartage process end-to-end: from arrival and clearance at the port to final delivery at your premises – or packing, loading and safely delivering your goods to the port.

Sydney Transport Learn more

Our 600m² Sydney warehouse is approved for bonded cargo, meaning your goods can legally be stored at our premises while waiting for customs clearance. We also arrange bonded transport to our premises.

Sydney Warehousing Learn more

We offer a range of marine insurance options so your goods are covered during every step of the journey, door-to-door (including for damage, theft and loss).

Cargo Insurance Learn more

Need to ship your goods from Sydney to Perth or vice-versa? We offer weekly coastal shipping solutions as an affordable and faster alternative to rail freight for moving goods between the east-west coast of Australia.

Coastal Shipping From Sydney Learn more

People you can trust

Meet Our Sydney Team

Did you know that many of our Sydney staff have been with ICE from the early days, since the company’s inception in 1988? That includes ICE’s Managing Director, one of the company’s founding members.

Half of our Sydney office have been working for ICE for 10+ years! This only goes to proof our nurturing, people-centric culture. We take pride in our client and staff retention rates.

When dealing with our ICE Sydney you can expect a professional environment with a family feel. Our people are highly experienced, well informed, and easy to talk to. Whether is to update you on your shipment or just to check-in and share the latest industry news, communication is paramount at ICE. Learn more about ICE and meet the wider team today.

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Full-Service International Freight Forwarders in Sydney

Strategically Located Office

Our 77G-licensed bonded warehouse, in Mascot, is strategically close to Port Botany and the Sydney International airport. This means less transport costs and more convenience to temporarily store your goods ot customs-bonded cargo.

IATA Approved

ICE is accredited by the International Air Transport Association. Whether is arranging same day delivery on early morning domestic flights or offering direct and consolidated freight services for extra flexibility, ICE can arrange the movement of your goods to virtually any destination in the world.

Award-Finalist Customs Manager

Our Sydney-based Customs Manager was a recognised finalist in the Customs Broker Awards 2016. Stephen brings a wealth of knowledge to our company with decades of experience in clearing a wide range of goods into Australia.

Proudly Diverse & Experienced

Did you know that: 50% of our Sydney staff are females. 50% of our Sydney staff have been working for ICE for over 10 years. We pride ourselves on the longevity of our staff and workplace diversity.

FAQ Section

Shipping to and from Sydney

What are the transit times for direct services ex Sydney?

Transit times to the main destinations of export from Sydney are:

New Zealand: 9 days, 1-2 times a week
Singapore: 17 days, 1-2 times a week
Hong Kong: 24 days, departing 2-4 times a week
Japan: 23 days, 1-2 times a week
China: 24 days, departing 2-4 times a week
Europe: 55 days, departing 1-2 times a week

How long does airfreight from Sydney take?

Departing from Sydney, transit times to the main airports are:

New Zealand: 1 day, departing every few hours
Singapore: 1 day, departing every few hours
Hong Kong: 1 day, departing 2-4 times a day
Japan: 1.5 days, departing every few hours
China: 1.5 days, departing every few hours
Europe: 2 days, departing every few hours

I have urgent cargo, can this move on a priority service?

Yes! If your cargo is urgent, our Sydney team can provide priority services and advise you of these options at time of booking. We pride ourselves on offering bespoke solutions to our customers as we know, not one size fits all. Just tell us what you need and when you need it by, and we will do our best to work out a solution for you.

What goods do you NOT handle?

Please note that we work with registered businesses to move B2B commercial products only.

We don’t provide marine insurance alone, only on freight that we arrange and we cannot handle the following items:

  • Personal effects
  • Live exports (animals)
  • Fresh produce (fruits, vegetables)
  • Cold cargo (dairy, meats, refrigerated foods in general)

I would like to talk to the Senior Managers of ICE, is this possible?

Absolutely! If you have a problem or query and need support from the business owners at ICE, we welcome your communication. At our Sydney office you can talk face to face to our Managing Director, Ronald Spahr or Sydney Director & Branch Manager, George Kyriakides.

Can I talk to your customs brokers directly?

Absolutely! ICE have our own in-house team of highly experienced and knowledgeable customs brokers in Sydney who you can get expert advice from. Unlike other forwarders, we do not sub-contract any of our functions to save on operational costs. Not only this means more control on the quality of our services, but faster communication between you and our brokers so we can process your customs entry as quickly as possible.

What sets ICE apart from other freight companies in Sydney?

Flexibility and unmatched customer service. Our experienced operators/consultants get to know your business so you receive a truly bespoke service when working with ICE. We are an independent private company run by the same dedicated management team since 1988.

As independent forwarders, we have the flexibility of choosing the best shipping option for your cargo through our vetted network of overseas agents. We build the operation around your requirements to the smallest detail.

We offer outstanding customer service and flexibility, combined.

How much a shipping agent in Sydney cost?

Freight forwarders charge based on factors such as shipment size and weight, the origin and destination of the cargo, the chosen mode of transportation (e.g., road, air, or sea), and any specialized services required, such as handling hazardous materials, oversized cargo or temperature-controlled shipments. Costs will also depend on market conditions (on or off peak season), the volume and frequency of shipments, and if you require additional services like customs clearance and warehousing. So there is no “one cost” for a freight forwarder. Every quote is customised and you’ll be charged fees on top of each service your freight forwarder provides to move your cargo along your supply chain.

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Without exception and on time

“Since having International Cargo Express handle my ocean freight, I have had my bookings and equipment available without exception and on time. Communication between ICE and my supplier is very good and I receive information via my shipper before my supplier.”

Michael Caiacob – Purchasing and Supply Officer

Managed goods end to end

“Due to critical stock levels we needed a fast solution to urgently meet growing client demand. Presented with this challenge, ICE quickly identified appropriate freighter services and proactively managed the movement of goods end to end.”

Eddie Liaw – Supply Chain Director

ICE offered flexibility

“ICE offered flexibility, high levels of communication and attention to detail during our pick, pack and delivery project. With their professional support we were able to meet the demands of our supply chain knowing our freight was in safe hands.”

Tony Kealy – National Distribution Manager